Wood ash application in a managed Norway spruce plantation did not affect ectomycorrhizal diversity or N retention capacity

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Ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi are key players in N cycling in coniferous forests, and forest management such as application of wood ash can affect their functionality. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of wood ash application on ECM fungal mycelial production, capacity to retain N, diversity and community composition. In-growth mesh bags were installed in control and treated plots. After 6 months, 15N labeled ammonium and nitrate were applied into the mesh bags, and 24 h later extramatrical mycelium (EMM) was extracted and analyzed. Wood ash had no effects on EMM in-growth, N retention capacity, diversity or community composition. In contrast, there were significant seasonal differences in the amount of EMM produced. These results demonstrate that applying up to 6 t ha−1 of wood ash in this type of plantation forest is a safe management practice that does not increase N leaching or negatively affect ECM fungi.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFungal Ecology
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • Community composition, Ectomycorrhizal fungi, Extramatrical mycelium, Nitrogen leaching, Nitrogen retention, Wood ash

ID: 212905490